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Far Speaking

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Far Speaking

by Unknown

Published ca. 1935

History of telephone development from 1877 to 1935.

Run time 10:31
Producer Unknown
Sponsor American Telephone and Telegraph Co. (AT&T), Bell System
Audio/Visual Sd, B&W


telephone company film about history;
historical recreation (1877) of the use of one of the earliest telephones in an Eastern town.
1885 - Long Distance Begins -- Maps with blinking lights show how cities across the countries became hooked into the telephone network.
introduction of a variety of telephone equipment -- loaded coils, vacuum tubes used as amplifiers or repeaters;
many varieties of vacuum tubes shown;
1915 -- The continent spanned with first transcontinental call; historic telephone calls across the continent and overseas between U.S. and foreign presidents noted;
globes shown with tracings of various telephone networks indicated;
shots: domestic servant in maid's outfit; answers phone,

4:47:02- 5:03:07
Great shot of a repeater station where telephone vacuums are stored. There's a V-shaped wipe to telephone polls. The telephone polls are in the middle of the V, and we see the sides of the repeater station to the sides of it.

7:44:50- 7:51:30
Beautiful black and white graphics over an old globe. The globe spins, and white lightning-shaped lines come out of the U.S. and extend east. "1935" comes over the globe at the end of the clip. Early virtual landscape.



Reviewer: JayKay49 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 5, 2012
Subject: Early Telephony Breakthroughs
From 1877 to 1935 the inventions of connectivity/exchanges; the loading coil; and the vacuum tube took phone calling from down the street to around the world. The film illustrates the consequential increase in the utility of the phone. Cutely done. As usual, the phone company did a good job of PR.

I noticed that even though it was 1935 and that was a long long distance call, nobody was screaming into the receiver - like we used to - 20 years later.
Reviewer: Christine Hennig - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 1, 2006
Subject: From Down the Street to Around the World
Charming Western Electric film about the history of long-distance telephone service up to 1935, and the technological innovations that made it possible. The film is framed by a silly scenes of a couple in 1877 who get their first telephoneââthe wife expresses skepticism that it will ever catch onââfollowed by an ending scene of the same couple, elderly in 1935, getting a call from their granddaughter in Japan (this time the wife insists that it was the husband who was originally skeptical). Between this are technical explanations of how long distance developed. These are kept lively by showing interesting graphics and animations of the devices involved, as well as a well-done down-through-the-years montage sequence. It all comes off as charming and fun, which seems to be typical of films made by the old Ma Bell.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: ***. Weirdness: ****. Historical Interest: *****. Overall Rating: ****.
Reviewer: jafran - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 17, 2005
Subject: Well done
This short little documentary is well done.
It covers a lot of information of the early years of the telephone in an entertaining way.
Reviewer: Spuzz - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 5, 2003
Subject: Look how far we;ve come!
Quite a suprisingly engaging short about the life of the telephone. from 1917 to around 1935. Even though this contraption wasnt 20 years old yet, the device did moderns in communications (oh yeah, it still is). Featuring a historical timeline from 1917, when a youngish couple try out one of the first telephones to call across the street, to the same coupple getting a call years later from Japan (!!) the film has great historical signposts, utilizing great animation and an amazing score. Really worth your while and is highly reccomended.
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